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Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Do you use DigiLocker ! ~ how facile ..

All of us are keen to earn more ! ~ most  likely you have a ‘safe deposit locker’ with a bank … depending on the valuables that you have – as one’s riches increase, one is forced to  chose renting  a bigger sized one (may be some require a room and not a box !) ~  A safe deposit box -  is an individually secured container, usually held within a larger safe or bank vault. Safe deposit boxes are generally located in banks, post offices or other institutions. Safe deposit boxes are used to store valuable possessions,  (Gold, silver, diamond ornaments ….) precious metals, currency, marketable securities, important documents such as wills, property deeds, - things that  need protection from theft, fire, flood, tampering, or other perils.

This is no post on a Bank locker, how to get one, what to keep, whether they could be insured or not ! ~ but on my personal happiness in becoming part of crowd of - : 7835607 – belated attempt though !

It is -* DigiLocker *  - the "digital locker"  service operated by the Government of India that enables Indian citizens to store certain official documents on the cloud. The service is aimed towards reducing the need to carry physical documents, and is part of the PM Shri Narendra Modiji -led government's Digital India initiative.  It comes with huge 1 GB of storage space for storing  identification card issued by Government agencies, education certificates, PAN cards, driving license, vehicle ownership documents and some other documents.

To utilize this service, one  need to possess an Aadhar card.  For sign-up, actually, you require only a mobile no. with which you get an OTP – with which you can create your User ID & Password – and the link the Aadhar card later.  But pulling up the documents from the Issuing Agencies can be done only when you link your all important Aadhar card number.   

The beta version of the service was rolled out in February 2015, and should have taken the Nation by storm.  Today when checked it has 7835607 users including Yours Truly.  Now it allows students of ICSE board to store their class X and XII certificates in DigiLocker and share them with agencies as required.  A couple of banks and one General Insurance Company too have started providing access to documents in DigiLocker from within its net-banking application, allowing users to e-sign them and forward as needed.  The list includes Hospitals - Tata Memorial Hospital  planning to launch the use of DigiLocker for storing cancer patients' medical documents and test reports. According to a UIDAI architect, patients would be provided a number key, which they can share with another hospital to allow them to access their test reports.  What a facility it would turn out to be !

There is also an associated facility for e-signing documents. The service is intended to minimise the use of physical documents, reduce administrative expenses, provide authenticity of the e-documents, provide secure access to government-issued documents and to make it easy for the residents to receive services.  Sooner, DigiLocker will minimise the use of physical documents and provide authenticity to e-documents.
Issuers of documents will have the facility to upload and share these with any registered agency or department. The aim is to make it easy for agencies to share e-documents and minimise the use of physical ones.  Unlike, Online storage platforms like Google Docs and Dropbox where you have to scan and upload – in Digilocker it is pulling the document from the Original Issuing Agency thus adding the mark of authenticity.   You can store any other document too – it can be your Share scrips, MF, Insurance policies, medical reports, PAN, Voter ID cards, Birth / marriage certificates and more .. .. …

Targeted at the idea of paperless governance, DigiLocker is a platform for issuance and verification of documents & certificates in a digital way, thus eliminating the use of physical documents.  The platform has the following benefits:
1.         Citizens can access their digital documents anytime, anywhere and share it online. This is convenient and time saving.
2.         It reduces the administrative overhead of Government departments by minimizing the use of paper.
3.         Digital Locker makes it easier to validate the authenticity of documents as they are issued directly by the registered issuers.
4.         Self-uploaded documents can be digitally signed using the eSign facility (which is similar to the process of self-attestation).

In Digi terminology - Issued documents are e-documents issued by various government agencies in electronic format directly from the original data source and the URI (link) of these documents is available in the issued documents section of DigiLocker. Whereas uploaded documents are those e-documents uploaded directly by the DigiLocker user.  A requester, in the context of DigiLocker, is a government department that offers citizen services (the revenue department, a passport office or a municipality) or an organisation that requires documentation (banks, telcos, etc.).

So ~ do you have a digital locker account – or you could immediately visit : https://digilocker.gov.in/ and sign up for one.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar

23rd Aug 2017.

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